According to information cited by the U.S. Department of State and the Association for Safe International Road Travel, road traffic deaths are the leading cause of fatalities among U.S. citizens abroad. This not only includes those riding in vehicles but crashes involving pedestrians as well. At Ohio State, pedestrians enjoy the right of way, and those on campus often enter crosswalks engaged in conversation, on their phones or wearing headphones. This should not be the assumption overseas, as traffic patterns, expectations and behavior will vary dramatically. As a general rule:
- Students should acquaint themselves with the local traffic laws and regulations, including:
-Local weather conditions or holidays that might impact road traffic and conditions
- Students are strongly advised against owning, renting or driving a motorized vehicle while abroad. In many cases, driving will not be legal if operating with solely a U.S. license and insurance. Moreover, students should recognize that they are not familiar with local road traffic conditions, rules and dangers involved in using a motorized vehicle. Coverage for injuries resulting from operating a vehicle without the proper license is an exclusion in the GeoBlue insurance coverage.
- Students should read and heed the advice in the U.S. Department of State Country Information sheets about travel and transportation. This section often includes specific information about various forms of travel to use or be avoided.